The Portable Power of Attorney for Personal Care

Suppose you have an accident, lose consciousness, and need medical treatment.  You cannot consent to the treatment.  How do you authorize the persons you trust the most to consent?

By naming them in the Portable Power of Attorney for Personal Care, which is a legal document the size of a business card, and small enough to keep on you at all times.


On November 8, 2001, while crossing a street near his residence, my father was struck by a bus, and rushed to the hospital by ambulance.

My parents had scheduled an appointment, but Dad was late arriving home.  My mother went to look for him.

She went to the scene of the accident, and spoke to a police officer, who drove her to the hospital.  

At the hospital, Mom was led to a room.  Dad was lying unconscious in a bed.  She identified him.  She called her three sons, and we all met inside a waiting room.  A doctor entered the room.

We confirmed that Mom was Dad’s attorney.  The doctor described the injury, and proposed a treatment.  Mom consented.

But what if there had been no appointment?

Mom would not have learned of the accident, gone to the hospital, or called the children.  The doctors would not have known whose consent to obtain, or how to contact her.  A stranger would have consented to the treatment.

But had the Portable Power of Attorney (for Personal Care) been available, Dad could have kept one on him.  The doctors would have read it to learn whose consent to obtain, and how to contact her.

To prepare and view a Portable Power of Attorney click here